January 26, 2021

How Loan Officers Can Use Social Media to Win Business

As mortgage demand surges, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot with no signs of slowing down. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it’s important to note that COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be slowing down, either. Capitalizing on the opportunity of increased mortgage demand has to look a little different today than it has before: As the pandemic limits face-to-face interaction, loan officers can’t rely on traditional tactics to win business and get a leg up over the competition.

So as the pandemic continues and as competition builds higher than ever, how can bank marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media. Social media has already become an essential part of the mortgage lending business — consumers expect technology to be part of their homebuying process — and many marketers and loan officers have recognized the value of social channels in maintaining authentic human relationships safely during COVID-19. But in a market that’s more competitive than ever before, social media strategies must be competitive as well. 

It’s time to kick it up a notch. With the following strategies, bank marketers can help loan officers build stronger social media strategies to stand out from the crowd and win mortgage business in 2021:

1. Activate loan officers on social media.

Audiences pay more attention to individual people on social media than to brands. That’s why a social selling approach, in which individual associates share branded messages on their own social media profiles, can stretch the reach of brand messaging 561% further than if a brand shared the message on only the company profile.

Marketers can help loan officers carry out their own successful social media strategies by arming them with educational content that their audiences will find useful. With the right social media management tool, marketers can store pre-approved content in a digital library, and loan officers can access it easily and frequently to share with their social media followers. What’s more, if each piece of content gets the compliance team’s sign-off before going into the library, the marketing team can rest easy knowing loan officers aren’t overstepping any regulatory red tape.

2. Drive interest with paid social media.

A compliant, organic social selling strategy is an important foundation — but to truly get ahead of the rest and capture more mortgage business, you’ll need to level up your social game. To target and distribute each post strategically for maximum return, fuel your social selling efforts with advertising dollars in paid social campaigns.

For example, if a loan officer wants to reach first-time homebuyers, you can target an ad by ZIP code to land it among those who are currently in rental-heavy areas. Whatever specific audience you’re trying to reach, paid ads allow you to tailor and target each message according to key indicators that someone may be looking to refinance or buy.

3. Use content to educate and engage.

Whether an organic social post or a paid ad, the content your loan officers share on social media can both help spark an interest in their services and position them as the trusted expert to turn to when it’s time to buy or refinance.

Arm your loan officers with articles, guidebooks, blog posts, and more to help educate audiences on the unique opportunities in today’s market and how they can save a lot of money. By helping followers understand what they have to gain, loan officers can set the foundation for many trusting, lasting client relationships.

4. Drive conversions with a post-click experience.

When loan officers share targeted, relevant content on social media, they’ll get their audience’s attention — but what happens next? Give interested prospects a clear path to further engage with your brand with landing pages.

Build landing pages on your website to correspond with each of your social campaigns. For example, the social selling strategy to reach first-time homebuyers could lead prospects to a landing page where they can download a guidebook on securing their first mortgage. You can create a capture form that asks for their name, email, and phone number in return for the download. Then, the contact information for your hottest leads is right in your hands. With it, you can do more than engage with audiences — you can convert prospects into clients.

Of course, all of this would be hard for any marketing team to pull off at the scale necessary to remain competitive in today’s mortgage market. The right social media management software can help you create landing pages with ease, coordinate different paid campaigns at once, ensure compliance among individual loan officers’ social posts, house educational content for loan officers to share frequently, and more. Today, when there’s both more opportunity and more competition for loan officers than perhaps ever before, investing in social media is well worth the money and effort.

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January 26, 2021

How Loan Officers Can Use Social Media to Win Business

As mortgage demand surges, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot with no signs of slowing down. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it’s important to note that COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be slowing down, either. Capitalizing on the opportunity of increased mortgage demand has to look a little different today than it has before: As the pandemic limits face-to-face interaction, loan officers can’t rely on traditional tactics to win business and get a leg up over the competition.

So as the pandemic continues and as competition builds higher than ever, how can bank marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media. Social media has already become an essential part of the mortgage lending business — consumers expect technology to be part of their homebuying process — and many marketers and loan officers have recognized the value of social channels in maintaining authentic human relationships safely during COVID-19. But in a market that’s more competitive than ever before, social media strategies must be competitive as well. 

It’s time to kick it up a notch. With the following strategies, bank marketers can help loan officers build stronger social media strategies to stand out from the crowd and win mortgage business in 2021:

1. Activate loan officers on social media.

Audiences pay more attention to individual people on social media than to brands. That’s why a social selling approach, in which individual associates share branded messages on their own social media profiles, can stretch the reach of brand messaging 561% further than if a brand shared the message on only the company profile.

Marketers can help loan officers carry out their own successful social media strategies by arming them with educational content that their audiences will find useful. With the right social media management tool, marketers can store pre-approved content in a digital library, and loan officers can access it easily and frequently to share with their social media followers. What’s more, if each piece of content gets the compliance team’s sign-off before going into the library, the marketing team can rest easy knowing loan officers aren’t overstepping any regulatory red tape.

2. Drive interest with paid social media.

A compliant, organic social selling strategy is an important foundation — but to truly get ahead of the rest and capture more mortgage business, you’ll need to level up your social game. To target and distribute each post strategically for maximum return, fuel your social selling efforts with advertising dollars in paid social campaigns.

For example, if a loan officer wants to reach first-time homebuyers, you can target an ad by ZIP code to land it among those who are currently in rental-heavy areas. Whatever specific audience you’re trying to reach, paid ads allow you to tailor and target each message according to key indicators that someone may be looking to refinance or buy.

3. Use content to educate and engage.

Whether an organic social post or a paid ad, the content your loan officers share on social media can both help spark an interest in their services and position them as the trusted expert to turn to when it’s time to buy or refinance.

Arm your loan officers with articles, guidebooks, blog posts, and more to help educate audiences on the unique opportunities in today’s market and how they can save a lot of money. By helping followers understand what they have to gain, loan officers can set the foundation for many trusting, lasting client relationships.

4. Drive conversions with a post-click experience.

When loan officers share targeted, relevant content on social media, they’ll get their audience’s attention — but what happens next? Give interested prospects a clear path to further engage with your brand with landing pages.

Build landing pages on your website to correspond with each of your social campaigns. For example, the social selling strategy to reach first-time homebuyers could lead prospects to a landing page where they can download a guidebook on securing their first mortgage. You can create a capture form that asks for their name, email, and phone number in return for the download. Then, the contact information for your hottest leads is right in your hands. With it, you can do more than engage with audiences — you can convert prospects into clients.

Of course, all of this would be hard for any marketing team to pull off at the scale necessary to remain competitive in today’s mortgage market. The right social media management software can help you create landing pages with ease, coordinate different paid campaigns at once, ensure compliance among individual loan officers’ social posts, house educational content for loan officers to share frequently, and more. Today, when there’s both more opportunity and more competition for loan officers than perhaps ever before, investing in social media is well worth the money and effort.

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SIMILAR POSTS:

As mortgage demand surges to historic highs, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it also means the environment is more competitive than ever.

So how can marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media.

Read this guidebook from Denim Social to learn how you can help your loan officers build strong relationships, stand out from the crowd and win more business using social media.

So you've invested the time, energy, and money into building a website that details all of your financial products and services, and you have a solid social media strategy in place — but do you have any means of connecting the two? A full digital marketing strategy requires a connection point to lead prospects along the digital journey and toward conversion. Landing pages can serve as the bridges you need.

These pages live on your website and hold information geared toward specific audience segments. For example, if an insurance agent is interested in helping first-time homebuyers with homeowners insurance, a social media post on the subject could include a link to a landing page on your website with even more resources for new buyers.

Landing pages are important because no matter how well-built your website homepage is, it simply can’t serve the needs of every consumer — not conveniently, at least. Without landing pages, site visitors arrive on the homepage and are left to dig through the site for specific information on their own. Landing pages, on the other hand, allow visitors to arrive at your site in the exact place they want to be. It’s the best way for financial institution marketers to quickly and easily offer content that meets the specific needs of various target audiences.

Customers want this level of personalization, and they're open to the idea of trading their information for it. In fact, more than three-quarters of consumers in one study said they would be willing to give more personal data in return for more tailored services. When customers submit their contact information through a form to download the content on your landing page, not only are they getting tailored content, but you're getting data that can fuel more personalized outreach directly to primed prospects. And that leads to higher conversion rates.

Start creating landing pages by planning a page for each promotion in your overall marketing campaign or for each of your target audiences. Then, we recommend the following steps to drive conversion:

1. Keep it simple and direct.

Ultimately, the goal of a landing page for financial institutions is to learn more about prospects by gathering their information in the form field. For visitors, the clearer the path to the field, the likelier they will be to share their data. Don’t fill a page with too many images, multiple offers, and other clutter — you’ll just increase the chances of visitors bouncing off the page before taking action. Instead, stick with concise, clear messaging, easy-to-follow directives, strong calls to action, and impactful design elements.


2. Leverage pre-built, fully customizable templates.

Few marketing professionals have the bandwidth or experience to build a whole webpage on their own. Fortunately, software like Denim Social with landing page functionality will offer pre-built, customizable templates that allow you to start with a page already optimized for conversion.


From there, you can easily customize the content, form fields, colors, images, and video on each page to fit your campaign goals. The key here is to keep a consistent style across pages so each one fits under your overall brand umbrella.

3. Scale, scale, scale!

The real beauty of using pre-built, customizable templates is the ability to design, build, and launch landing pages at scale. Denim Social’s code-free interface makes it easy for anyone to populate many templates with customized elements — no web design expertise required. Just personalize, publish, then easily iterate and adjust based on conversion data.

In practice, this looks like building hundreds or even thousands of highly professional landing pages in just minutes. That’s a lot more opportunity for targeted messaging than one broad website homepage on its own.

Landing pages are one of the most effective tools at your disposal to create tailored experiences, capture valuable information, and generate high-quality leads. With the right platform, any marketer can build landing pages at scale and propel more prospects toward conversion.

The pandemic has been a catalyst for quick shifts in the financial services industry, and many of those changes have created more challenges when it comes to compliance. For one, a large portion of financial services workers have transitioned to working remotely, and this isn’t likely to change: Research from PwC shows that even after the pandemic, nearly 70 percent of financial services companies say the majority of their workforces will work from home at least once a week moving forward. For banks, accommodating this new work environment has meant updating digital tools and processes.

Remote work tools are not the only aspect of digital transformation that banks are taking on. In fact, the virtual shift was already well underway before COVID-19 as consumers sought more digital touchpoints. The pandemic just sped up the process.

Such fast–paced digital transformation has meant increased risk for missteps and errors that can trigger compliance concerns. As bank marketers look for more ways to make virtual connections, they should keep the following in mind when it comes to navigating increased compliance risks:

1. Employees are both your greatest asset and your greatest risk.

When loan officers, financial advisors, and other bank associates cannot meet with clients and prospects in person, social media can be an excellent tool for relationship-building. Employees can also significantly expand a brand’s reach on social. There are regulations to keep in mind around electronic communication, however. FINRA’s rules, for instance, prohibit misleading or promissory statements and claims as well as communication that predicts or projects performance.

When the world went digital, banks without proper approval processes already nailed down likely felt the crunch as employees began interacting more online. When employees and marketers can’t simply stop by a compliance officer’s desk to ask about social updates or blog post ideas, adjusting approval processes is a must. Banks need an approval framework to ensure that every brand-related social media post from every employee meets brand messaging and regulatory guidelines. The right social media management tools can automate that approval process so that employees can send posts or engagements to the right person with just a click of a button.

2. A hot mortgage market doesn’t make safety any less important.

The mortgage market is hotter than ever before as rates reach historic lows. Loan officers are busy helping more clients secure mortgages, and the savvy ones are also using social media to get in front of prospects and capture more business. As business increases, however, so should a bank’s attention on compliance.

Marketers can keep a close eye on electronic communication using software with keyword filtering capabilities. For example, marketers could flag the word “guarantee” so any social post with that word creates an alert, so no promissory posts go live. Automatic archiving is another excellent software capability when it comes to compliance. When each post and engagement is automatically saved and stored, it’s easy to prove compliance if auditors ever come knocking.

3. If your marketing department’s growth is limited, optimize your processes.

Digital transformation may be accelerating quickly in the financial services sphere, but that does not mean marketing or compliance teams are expanding alongside it. Many financial institutions currently lack the resources to expand staff as they navigate revenue-related challenges of the pandemic.

The roles of marketers and compliance teams, however, are indeed increasing in scope and importance as banks must continue connecting virtually with consumers to guide them through new, digital ways of doing business. The good news is that banks can expand their capabilities without expanding staff or making huge capital expenditures on sophisticated digital tools. Social media is a low-cost, high-ROI option, and there are affordable social media management tools that enable marketers to keep electronic communication within regulatory bounds at scale.

For institutions that aren’t planning to grow their budgets anytime soon, optimizing marketing and compliance processes is key to connecting digitally with customers while maintaining compliance. Tools that automatically bring red flags to marketers’ attention and make it easy for employees to post approved content will help marketers guide banks safely through this digital transformation and the next.

Temps may be on the rise, but interest rates are still historically low. Combined with vaccine-fueled reopenings, the spring 2021 real estate market is hotter than ever. Mortgage loan officers are reaping the rewards of the fast-moving market, but they’re also seeing fierce competition. 

So how does a loan officer stand out and catch the attention of homebuyers? Social media is the answer. Social media has already become an essential part of the mortgage lending business and consumers expect technology to be part of the homebuying process too. 

Now is the time for financial institutions to unlock the power of loan officers on social media. Here’s where to start: 

  1. ACTIVATE LOAN OFFICERS ON SOCIAL MEDIA. Social is all about human connections and audiences pay more attention to individual people on social media than to brands. That’s why a social selling approach, in which individual loan officers share branded messages on their own social media profiles, is essential. Marketers might bristle at the idea of loan officers posting, but the right tools can keep individual postings on strategy, on brand and in compliance.
  1. DRIVE INTEREST WITH PAID SOCIAL MEDIA. We all remember the early days of social media when good organic content was all it took to breakthrough, but the platforms and algorithms have changed -- and your strategy should too. Luckily social media advertising is low budget and high return. Whether it’s proximity-based ads or amplifying posts from your loan officers, paid advertising can ensure your content is served to the right people at the right time.
  1. USE CONTENT TO EDUCATE AND ENGAGE. Your institution’s content is an opportunity for your loan officers to establish trust through social media. Arm them with articles, guidebooks, blog posts, and more to help educate audiences on the unique opportunities in today’s market and how they can save a lot of money.
  1. DRIVE CONVERSIONS WITH A POST-CLICK EXPERIENCE. Don’t create a digital dead end on social media. Instead, build landing pages on your website to correspond with each of your social campaigns and create forms to capture followers’ contact information in exchange for a download. This arms your loan officers with interested leads and the details they need to take the next step. 

With these strategies social media can help your loan officers stand out and stay competitive. Overwhelmed? Tools from Denim Social can help mortgage marketers maximize efficiency and stay compliant.



Doug’s Something Extra: The notion of intellectual curiosity. “This looks like digging deeper and not presuming that you know the answer. Always ask for the one last ‘why.'”

Facebook boasts a user count of 2.6 billion, making it the most used social media platform worldwide. Chances are, many of your current and future customers are using Facebook frequently throughout the day and it's important to have your brand established within your network. And while having a presence on Facebook is important, knowing how to make the most out of this tool can help you capitalize on growing your network. Check out these best practices to make the most of your Facebook marketing efforts and start achieving real results.

Establish your professional brand

Start by making sure that the page you’re using is a Facebook Business Page. Moving away from your personal page will allow you to better optimize for business specific marketing. Next, carefully check your settings to ensure that your privacy settings are up to date and that the right people can find your page. Continue your page set-up by adding images and information about your business. 

Optimize your profile picture and cover photo:

Update your Facebook Business Page ‘About’ section with this information:

  • Add your NMLS# (if applicable),  website URL, contact information, location and operating hours
  • Create a username that is easily searchable and consistent across networks
  • Add a description 
  • Company information
  • Write a summary containing your value, results, and a call-to-action

A helpful way to engage new visitors is to pin a Welcome Post to the top of your page to let visitors know what to expect on your business.

Build a community and create human connections

A good starting place is inviting your friends and family to like and engage with your business page. You can continue to grow your network by engaging with your audience and other parts of your community by:

  • Staying up to date with notifications and responding where necessary.  
  • Tagging any partners that helped during the process
  • Sharing posts for community events 

You can also create more opportunities for engagement by using hashtag. To learn more about how them implement them into your social strategy visit our blog post: ‘What’s in a #Hashtag?’ for more information. You can also check out this blog post for even more helpful tips: ‘4 Tips for Building a Facebook Business Page Following.’

Consistently post relevant and insightful content

Ask your audience questions to spark comments and interact with them. By gaining insight into pressing problems customers face it can be a help you create educational resources for them.

Find relevant content by checking your Denim Social content library, or search for topics in the Facebook search bar to find inspiration from others in your field. Something to also keep in mind are the best times to post for optimal engagement:

  • Best time: Thursday-Sunday between 1-4pm
  • Single best time: Sunday at 3 pm. 
  • Worst time: Tuesday

Check out our guide in the Help Center for more information.

Best Practices: 

Jumpstart your Facebook business optimization by adding a 30-minute weekly recurring meeting on your calendar to do the following:

  • Schedule content for the week using the 4-1-1 approach
  • Engage with your audience’s content
  • Seek recommendations from customers & share success stories

Now that you've started marketing your business on Facebook, you can continue your growth by creating a follow-up loop and check your page regularly to respond to questions, comments, messages. For a quick reference of these tips, bookmark this infographic.


GUIDES

How Loan Officers Can Use Social Media to Win Business

As mortgage demand surges, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot with no signs of slowing down. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it’s important to note that COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be slowing down, either. Capitalizing on the opportunity of increased mortgage demand has to look a little different today than it has before: As the pandemic limits face-to-face interaction, loan officers can’t rely on traditional tactics to win business and get a leg up over the competition.

So as the pandemic continues and as competition builds higher than ever, how can bank marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media. Social media has already become an essential part of the mortgage lending business — consumers expect technology to be part of their homebuying process — and many marketers and loan officers have recognized the value of social channels in maintaining authentic human relationships safely during COVID-19. But in a market that’s more competitive than ever before, social media strategies must be competitive as well. 

It’s time to kick it up a notch. With the following strategies, bank marketers can help loan officers build stronger social media strategies to stand out from the crowd and win mortgage business in 2021:

1. Activate loan officers on social media.

Audiences pay more attention to individual people on social media than to brands. That’s why a social selling approach, in which individual associates share branded messages on their own social media profiles, can stretch the reach of brand messaging 561% further than if a brand shared the message on only the company profile.

Marketers can help loan officers carry out their own successful social media strategies by arming them with educational content that their audiences will find useful. With the right social media management tool, marketers can store pre-approved content in a digital library, and loan officers can access it easily and frequently to share with their social media followers. What’s more, if each piece of content gets the compliance team’s sign-off before going into the library, the marketing team can rest easy knowing loan officers aren’t overstepping any regulatory red tape.

2. Drive interest with paid social media.

A compliant, organic social selling strategy is an important foundation — but to truly get ahead of the rest and capture more mortgage business, you’ll need to level up your social game. To target and distribute each post strategically for maximum return, fuel your social selling efforts with advertising dollars in paid social campaigns.

For example, if a loan officer wants to reach first-time homebuyers, you can target an ad by ZIP code to land it among those who are currently in rental-heavy areas. Whatever specific audience you’re trying to reach, paid ads allow you to tailor and target each message according to key indicators that someone may be looking to refinance or buy.

3. Use content to educate and engage.

Whether an organic social post or a paid ad, the content your loan officers share on social media can both help spark an interest in their services and position them as the trusted expert to turn to when it’s time to buy or refinance.

Arm your loan officers with articles, guidebooks, blog posts, and more to help educate audiences on the unique opportunities in today’s market and how they can save a lot of money. By helping followers understand what they have to gain, loan officers can set the foundation for many trusting, lasting client relationships.

4. Drive conversions with a post-click experience.

When loan officers share targeted, relevant content on social media, they’ll get their audience’s attention — but what happens next? Give interested prospects a clear path to further engage with your brand with landing pages.

Build landing pages on your website to correspond with each of your social campaigns. For example, the social selling strategy to reach first-time homebuyers could lead prospects to a landing page where they can download a guidebook on securing their first mortgage. You can create a capture form that asks for their name, email, and phone number in return for the download. Then, the contact information for your hottest leads is right in your hands. With it, you can do more than engage with audiences — you can convert prospects into clients.

Of course, all of this would be hard for any marketing team to pull off at the scale necessary to remain competitive in today’s mortgage market. The right social media management software can help you create landing pages with ease, coordinate different paid campaigns at once, ensure compliance among individual loan officers’ social posts, house educational content for loan officers to share frequently, and more. Today, when there’s both more opportunity and more competition for loan officers than perhaps ever before, investing in social media is well worth the money and effort.

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ALL GUIDES:

Find out how more than 400 financial institutions across asset classes, geographies, and more used social media in 2020 to effectively support their business objectives. We’ve also outlined key trends to inform your social media future.

As mortgage demand surges to historic highs, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it also means the environment is more competitive than ever.

So how can marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media.

Read this guidebook from Denim Social to learn how you can help your loan officers build strong relationships, stand out from the crowd and win more business using social media.

Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

  • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
  • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
  • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

Every Mortgage Marketer Should Ask Themselves

Compliance is complicated, but don’t let it stop your lending team from making the most of social media. Think you’re ready to start social selling? Ask yourself these five questions!

Stronger Customer Relationships on Instagram

Financial Services companies should be advertising on Instagram. We break down why, and help you create a strategy to reach new customers- while continuing to build trust in your brand.

Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

  • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
  • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
  • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

ABA Study: The Current State of Social Media

See what nearly 430 bank marketers had to say when asked questions such as:

  • Is it important to equip your sales personnel with social media accounts?
  • Does your bank measure the impact of your social media use?
  • Download this guidebook to learn how 3 mortgage lenders are using social media to:

    • Position themselves in a place the community is already looking ... their social media
    • Empower loan officers to engage in local conversations
    • Turn their institution's loan officers into the voice of their brand
    • Build trust within the community

    Which roles do you fill when building your bank's marketing dream team? This guide will show you the following:

    • Who does what
    • The right structure to execute strategy
    • How compliance software can help

    Enjoy!

    How 6 Financial Marketers Are Creating Value in Social Media

    Ever wonder what everyone else is doing in social media? We talked to six leading financial marketers about how they’re succeeding today and planning for the next big thing.

    Get their insights on strengthening your social strategies, unlocking the power of employee networks and creating next-level content that drives engagement.

    COVID-19 & Bank Social Media

    Times are different and how you connect with customers and potential customers has changed drastically. In a socially distant world, learn to still build lasting relationships.

    Download and learn the guiding principles for using social media to serve both your customers and communities in the midst of a pandemic.

    Read this guide if you’re asking yourself:

    • Is my social media policy current and comprehensive?
    • How do I ensure social media compliance during M&A?
    • What do I need to consider for direct messaging compliance?

    In this guide we will help you think about your all important social media policy and thoughtfully consider how changes in social media tech and even your bank’s structure may impact compliance.

    Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

    • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
    • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
    • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

    Every Financial Services Marketer Should Ask Themselves

    Compliance is complicated, but don’t let it stop your lending team from making the most of social media. Think you’re ready to start social selling? Ask yourself these five questions!

    GUIDES

    How Loan Officers Can Use Social Media to Win Business

    As mortgage demand surges, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot with no signs of slowing down. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it’s important to note that COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be slowing down, either. Capitalizing on the opportunity of increased mortgage demand has to look a little different today than it has before: As the pandemic limits face-to-face interaction, loan officers can’t rely on traditional tactics to win business and get a leg up over the competition.

    So as the pandemic continues and as competition builds higher than ever, how can bank marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media. Social media has already become an essential part of the mortgage lending business — consumers expect technology to be part of their homebuying process — and many marketers and loan officers have recognized the value of social channels in maintaining authentic human relationships safely during COVID-19. But in a market that’s more competitive than ever before, social media strategies must be competitive as well. 

    It’s time to kick it up a notch. With the following strategies, bank marketers can help loan officers build stronger social media strategies to stand out from the crowd and win mortgage business in 2021:

    1. Activate loan officers on social media.

    Audiences pay more attention to individual people on social media than to brands. That’s why a social selling approach, in which individual associates share branded messages on their own social media profiles, can stretch the reach of brand messaging 561% further than if a brand shared the message on only the company profile.

    Marketers can help loan officers carry out their own successful social media strategies by arming them with educational content that their audiences will find useful. With the right social media management tool, marketers can store pre-approved content in a digital library, and loan officers can access it easily and frequently to share with their social media followers. What’s more, if each piece of content gets the compliance team’s sign-off before going into the library, the marketing team can rest easy knowing loan officers aren’t overstepping any regulatory red tape.

    2. Drive interest with paid social media.

    A compliant, organic social selling strategy is an important foundation — but to truly get ahead of the rest and capture more mortgage business, you’ll need to level up your social game. To target and distribute each post strategically for maximum return, fuel your social selling efforts with advertising dollars in paid social campaigns.

    For example, if a loan officer wants to reach first-time homebuyers, you can target an ad by ZIP code to land it among those who are currently in rental-heavy areas. Whatever specific audience you’re trying to reach, paid ads allow you to tailor and target each message according to key indicators that someone may be looking to refinance or buy.

    3. Use content to educate and engage.

    Whether an organic social post or a paid ad, the content your loan officers share on social media can both help spark an interest in their services and position them as the trusted expert to turn to when it’s time to buy or refinance.

    Arm your loan officers with articles, guidebooks, blog posts, and more to help educate audiences on the unique opportunities in today’s market and how they can save a lot of money. By helping followers understand what they have to gain, loan officers can set the foundation for many trusting, lasting client relationships.

    4. Drive conversions with a post-click experience.

    When loan officers share targeted, relevant content on social media, they’ll get their audience’s attention — but what happens next? Give interested prospects a clear path to further engage with your brand with landing pages.

    Build landing pages on your website to correspond with each of your social campaigns. For example, the social selling strategy to reach first-time homebuyers could lead prospects to a landing page where they can download a guidebook on securing their first mortgage. You can create a capture form that asks for their name, email, and phone number in return for the download. Then, the contact information for your hottest leads is right in your hands. With it, you can do more than engage with audiences — you can convert prospects into clients.

    Of course, all of this would be hard for any marketing team to pull off at the scale necessary to remain competitive in today’s mortgage market. The right social media management software can help you create landing pages with ease, coordinate different paid campaigns at once, ensure compliance among individual loan officers’ social posts, house educational content for loan officers to share frequently, and more. Today, when there’s both more opportunity and more competition for loan officers than perhaps ever before, investing in social media is well worth the money and effort.

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    ALL GUIDES:

    Find out how more than 400 financial institutions across asset classes, geographies, and more used social media in 2020 to effectively support their business objectives. We’ve also outlined key trends to inform your social media future.

    As mortgage demand surges to historic highs, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it also means the environment is more competitive than ever.

    So how can marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media.

    Read this guidebook from Denim Social to learn how you can help your loan officers build strong relationships, stand out from the crowd and win more business using social media.

    Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

    • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
    • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
    • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

    Every Mortgage Marketer Should Ask Themselves

    Compliance is complicated, but don’t let it stop your lending team from making the most of social media. Think you’re ready to start social selling? Ask yourself these five questions!

    Stronger Customer Relationships on Instagram

    Financial Services companies should be advertising on Instagram. We break down why, and help you create a strategy to reach new customers- while continuing to build trust in your brand.

    Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

    • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
    • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
    • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

    ABA Study: The Current State of Social Media

    See what nearly 430 bank marketers had to say when asked questions such as:

  • Is it important to equip your sales personnel with social media accounts?
  • Does your bank measure the impact of your social media use?
  • Download this guidebook to learn how 3 mortgage lenders are using social media to:

    • Position themselves in a place the community is already looking ... their social media
    • Empower loan officers to engage in local conversations
    • Turn their institution's loan officers into the voice of their brand
    • Build trust within the community

    Which roles do you fill when building your bank's marketing dream team? This guide will show you the following:

    • Who does what
    • The right structure to execute strategy
    • How compliance software can help

    Enjoy!

    How 6 Financial Marketers Are Creating Value in Social Media

    Ever wonder what everyone else is doing in social media? We talked to six leading financial marketers about how they’re succeeding today and planning for the next big thing.

    Get their insights on strengthening your social strategies, unlocking the power of employee networks and creating next-level content that drives engagement.

    COVID-19 & Bank Social Media

    Times are different and how you connect with customers and potential customers has changed drastically. In a socially distant world, learn to still build lasting relationships.

    Download and learn the guiding principles for using social media to serve both your customers and communities in the midst of a pandemic.

    Read this guide if you’re asking yourself:

    • Is my social media policy current and comprehensive?
    • How do I ensure social media compliance during M&A?
    • What do I need to consider for direct messaging compliance?

    In this guide we will help you think about your all important social media policy and thoughtfully consider how changes in social media tech and even your bank’s structure may impact compliance.

    Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

    • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
    • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
    • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

    Every Financial Services Marketer Should Ask Themselves

    Compliance is complicated, but don’t let it stop your lending team from making the most of social media. Think you’re ready to start social selling? Ask yourself these five questions!

    RESOURCES

    NEWS
    January 26, 2021

    How Loan Officers Can Use Social Media to Win Business

    As mortgage demand surges, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot with no signs of slowing down. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it’s important to note that COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be slowing down, either. Capitalizing on the opportunity of increased mortgage demand has to look a little different today than it has before: As the pandemic limits face-to-face interaction, loan officers can’t rely on traditional tactics to win business and get a leg up over the competition.

    So as the pandemic continues and as competition builds higher than ever, how can bank marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media. Social media has already become an essential part of the mortgage lending business — consumers expect technology to be part of their homebuying process — and many marketers and loan officers have recognized the value of social channels in maintaining authentic human relationships safely during COVID-19. But in a market that’s more competitive than ever before, social media strategies must be competitive as well. 

    It’s time to kick it up a notch. With the following strategies, bank marketers can help loan officers build stronger social media strategies to stand out from the crowd and win mortgage business in 2021:

    1. Activate loan officers on social media.

    Audiences pay more attention to individual people on social media than to brands. That’s why a social selling approach, in which individual associates share branded messages on their own social media profiles, can stretch the reach of brand messaging 561% further than if a brand shared the message on only the company profile.

    Marketers can help loan officers carry out their own successful social media strategies by arming them with educational content that their audiences will find useful. With the right social media management tool, marketers can store pre-approved content in a digital library, and loan officers can access it easily and frequently to share with their social media followers. What’s more, if each piece of content gets the compliance team’s sign-off before going into the library, the marketing team can rest easy knowing loan officers aren’t overstepping any regulatory red tape.

    2. Drive interest with paid social media.

    A compliant, organic social selling strategy is an important foundation — but to truly get ahead of the rest and capture more mortgage business, you’ll need to level up your social game. To target and distribute each post strategically for maximum return, fuel your social selling efforts with advertising dollars in paid social campaigns.

    For example, if a loan officer wants to reach first-time homebuyers, you can target an ad by ZIP code to land it among those who are currently in rental-heavy areas. Whatever specific audience you’re trying to reach, paid ads allow you to tailor and target each message according to key indicators that someone may be looking to refinance or buy.

    3. Use content to educate and engage.

    Whether an organic social post or a paid ad, the content your loan officers share on social media can both help spark an interest in their services and position them as the trusted expert to turn to when it’s time to buy or refinance.

    Arm your loan officers with articles, guidebooks, blog posts, and more to help educate audiences on the unique opportunities in today’s market and how they can save a lot of money. By helping followers understand what they have to gain, loan officers can set the foundation for many trusting, lasting client relationships.

    4. Drive conversions with a post-click experience.

    When loan officers share targeted, relevant content on social media, they’ll get their audience’s attention — but what happens next? Give interested prospects a clear path to further engage with your brand with landing pages.

    Build landing pages on your website to correspond with each of your social campaigns. For example, the social selling strategy to reach first-time homebuyers could lead prospects to a landing page where they can download a guidebook on securing their first mortgage. You can create a capture form that asks for their name, email, and phone number in return for the download. Then, the contact information for your hottest leads is right in your hands. With it, you can do more than engage with audiences — you can convert prospects into clients.

    Of course, all of this would be hard for any marketing team to pull off at the scale necessary to remain competitive in today’s mortgage market. The right social media management software can help you create landing pages with ease, coordinate different paid campaigns at once, ensure compliance among individual loan officers’ social posts, house educational content for loan officers to share frequently, and more. Today, when there’s both more opportunity and more competition for loan officers than perhaps ever before, investing in social media is well worth the money and effort.

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    OTHER NEWS:

    The insurance industry is built on relationships — so much so that, before the pandemic, 90% of sales conversations and 70% of ongoing customer conversations happened face-to-face. Things today look quite different: Only 5% of agents say they’re talking to customers in person.

    Digitizing marketing operations became a top priority for companies in the insurance industry almost overnight. Not only is the landscape in the midst of significant change for nearly every customer segment, but the use of digital channels is also accelerating due to the pandemic. Some insurance companies might even take a digital-first approach to sales as a result, with consumers choosing to seek advice from advisors through video calls or live chat.

    Insurance marketers need to move beyond traditional techniques and arm agents with the tools to effectively communicate and convert prospective customers in the digital space. How to go about doing this will depend on the company as well as its target audiences, but here are a few elements for every insurance marketer to keep in mind:

    1. Never lose the human touch.

    Trust is paramount in the insurance industry, but as more customer interactions occur online, companies will have to try harder to build and maintain it. One recent Accenture survey of insurance consumers found that only 12% said they placed a lot of trust in automated services over phone, web, or email when making a claim, and only 7% said the same about chatbots. However, nearly half said they would trust a human advisor. To avoid eroding trust with digitization efforts, you must put the human element front and center in every digital interaction.

    Social media is an excellent way to do this, but we’re not only talking about a big company brand page. To establish and maintain connections via social channels, encourage advisors to use their own professional accounts. An advisor’s professional accounts generally have 10 times the reach of company profiles, and they’re also more likely to improve customer engagement, as the interactions are coming from a human rather than from a brand.

    Customers value authentic human connections: Life insurance customers who had interaction with their insurers had Net Promoter Scores 25 points higher than customers who had no interaction at all.

    2. Reevaluate the customers’ digital journeys.

    Social media is the place for agents to start conversations and get prospects’ attention digitally, but it’s only the starting point in a larger customer journey. Audit the tools that agents are currently using, and assess how each individual channel contributes to the larger customer journey.

    If the majority of an agent’s social posts are just graphics or text, they’re not leading prospects anywhere — they’re just building social media dead ends. To lead prospects to the next step in a digital journey, build landing pages on your website that agents can link to in their social posts. When prospects follow the post to the landing page, they take a meaningful next step in the digital journey with your brand to engage and learn more.

    3. Personalize your approach.

    Personalization is the name of the game in digital marketing. The problem is, some insurers are more “cut-and-paste” with online interactions, sending out messages and promotions built for the masses.

    In the Accenture survey above, 66% of insurance consumers said they would be willing to share personal data for more personalized services to prevent injury and loss. With that in mind, it’s clear how a broad approach misses many potential prospects. Work toward personalizing the digital experience for a variety of target audiences by providing valuable content tailored to their specific needs and develop landing pages geared toward each of your audience sectors. It’s not a one-size-fits-all customer journey, so don’t treat it as such.

    Changing marketing tactics is no small undertaking. It requires time, resources, and know-how to do successfully. Social media management tools from Denim Social can help get agents active on social media at scale, put human faces behind the brand name, and build online customer journeys based on trust.

    In speaking with friends, co-workers and bankers, I have come across many reasons why more of us are not effectively using social media: not enough time, concerns about compliance and lack of knowledge top the list.

    In banking, we are the relationship builders, the trusted sources and the personal interaction—whether in-person or via social, video, chat or other mediums. So how do we bridge the gap between in-person and digital interactions? How do we display our personality digitally while balancing compliance concerns? How do we personalize digital outreach and engagement through curated content and social media channels in order to educate customers and engage new prospects?

    Banks’ retail customers and business clients expect personalized experiences. Using social media in a compliant way for bankers to engage with customers and differentiate themselves from the competition. According to Denim Social, ABA’s endorsed social media management platform, building a personalized and human digital experience is key, and the best place to start doing it is on social media. Informative and educational content is a fantastic entry point into a digital journey, as it starts by engaging prospects and building trust.

    People trust people, and banks that have individual employees actively using social media on behalf of the bank’s brand are seeing results. Even when sharing the same content, on average employees see a click-through rate twice as high as their company’s own social channels see, according to LinkedIn. Two-thirds of consumers surveyed by the Harris Poll say they are likely to purchase an item or service they see on their social feeds.

    Here’s a simple process to make social selling work in a bank context:

    • Marketing teams easily curate and share educational, compliant content in a pre-approved digital library.
    • Then employees access the approved content and share through their own, personal digital channels.
    • Approval workflows and compliance checks along the way ensure the posts meet both the bank’s compliance and branding requirements.

    Employee posts are a complement to, not a substitute for, paid social media, which enables marketers to create and target paid ads specific to demographics, geography and more. Imagine creating educational content for a demographic of first-time homebuyers. Your loan officer shares savings tips, homeownership information and educational content on their social channels, establishing expertise and developing relationships along the way. Paid ads ensure the right homebuyers see the content.

    According to IBM, when a lead is generated through social selling or employee advocacy, that lead is seven times more likely to close compared to other lead gen tactics. Through this digital relationship, your loan officer has engaged in social selling and is reaching new markets—all without leaving the comfort of their home, their office or (these days) their home office.

    This article was originally published by ABA Bank Marketing.

    Lisa Gold Schier is an SVP at ABA, where she leads the ABA Endorsed Solutions team and business innovation.

    The insurance sales environment has been rocked by COVID-19. What was once an industry built on face-to-face relationships is now going through rapid digital transformation. In the absence of in-person meetings, social media is the best place for agents to build trust with current and prospective clients.

    Trust is the No. 1 thing insurance companies sell, after all, and a recent Edelman report shows that consumers rank brand employees as more trustworthy than brand CEOs or spokespeople. When insurance agents get in front of customers on social media, they can sell trust more effectively than brands alone.

    And customers are looking for authentic connections: One study shows that life insurance customers who connected with their insurers gave Net Promoter Scores 25 points higher than those who did not. With face-to-face meetings off the table, social media is the primary stand-in for forging those deep, connected relationships that build trust and drive referrals.

    As more agents recognize this and flock online to bring in business and build their individual professional brands, insurance marketers are tasked with scaling oversight to ensure compliance and consistent brand messaging. Considering that marketers at large companies could be looking at social strategies of thousands of agents dispersed across markets nationwide, it’s easy to see how managing the creation and publishing of owned and paid content can be incredibly time-consuming and complex.

    Despite these challenges, insurance marketers must manage social media well. So how can marketing departments handle the influx of responsibilities? Start by understanding the most common mistakes and how to avoid them:

    1. Letting agents fly solo.

    Agents are busy, especially at a time when insurance needs are changing constantly. What’s more, many agents are likely jumping into social media as a professional tool for the first time: More than three-quarters of property-casualty agents are over age 50. They likely have less experience on social than their digital-native counterparts and require more guidance from marketing teams. It’s the marketing team’s responsibility to encourage agents to get and stay active on social media by making this task as easy as possible for them.

    The right social media management software will allow marketers to create content libraries filled with preapproved posts. Agents can simply log in, choose which preapproved post they’d like to share, and either post it right away or schedule it to be posted later. This makes it easy for agents to access and post valuable content for their readers, and marketers will know that agents’ posts aren’t risking compliance or brand reputation.

    2. Kicking it old-school.

    Posting content and managing engagement on each individual social media platform is simply not scalable for marketers or agents today. For your team to be successful on social media, you must modernize your tools. Multichannel publishing platforms can help you effectively and efficiently create, approve, and publish content — and then manage engagement for many accounts on various platforms at once. Marketers can create approval workflows, schedule out social posts, and manage comments and other engagements, all from one central location.

    What’s more, social media management software can help ease the regulatory pressure that comes along with electronic communications. In order to prove compliance in the event of an audit, you must keep record of every branded post and engagement. If you have thousands of agents using social media on behalf of the brand, however, it’s simply impossible to keep track of it all manually. It’s time to retire the binders and invest in software that can automatically log all of your posts and replies — saving you time and keeping your team audit-ready.

    3. Being intimidated by paid social advertising.

    When brands first began using social media as a marketing tool, all it took to make a post go viral was high-quality content. While great content is certainly a necessary place to start today, platforms have since updated their algorithms to make branded content less visible overall. Despite all the work that agents and marketers put into organic social media strategies, the reach could be insignificant without the help of paid advertising.

    Paid social media advertising is a low-cost, high-return investment that will ensure branded posts land with exactly the right audiences at the right time. One of our clients, a Fortune 200 insurance company, used paid social to create one campaign that delivered click-through rates 59% higher than the financial and insurance industry average for social media and mobile advertising. And the cost-per-click was 24% less than similar campaigns.

    Yes, it’s true that managing paid campaigns can be a headache for marketers, especially if they’re dealing with multiple campaigns at the brand, agency, and agent levels. But social media management software can step in to help ease the burden, and the results are worth the investment.

    It’s understandable that agents and marketers alike might feel they’ve been tossed into the deep end as insurance saw a 180-degree shift in sales strategies almost overnight. The good news, however, is that the right tools can help you get a handle on the new demands of today to build an even stronger sales strategy for tomorrow.

    You can’t just call yourself a “thought leader.” Thought leadership is earned, and you earn it by having a powerful voice in your domain. But how do you cultivate that voice? To answer that question, James Robert Lay of the Digital Growth Institute invited Doug Wilber, CEO at Denim Social, onto the latest episode to discuss how financial brands can create content worthy of the “thought leader” mantle.

    So you've invested the time, energy, and money into building a website that details all of your financial products and services, and you have a solid social media strategy in place — but do you have any means of connecting the two? A full digital marketing strategy requires a connection point to lead prospects along the digital journey and toward conversion. Landing pages can serve as the bridges you need.

    These pages live on your website and hold information geared toward specific audience segments. For example, if an insurance agent is interested in helping first-time homebuyers with homeowners insurance, a social media post on the subject could include a link to a landing page on your website with even more resources for new buyers.

    Landing pages are important because no matter how well-built your website homepage is, it simply can’t serve the needs of every consumer — not conveniently, at least. Without landing pages, site visitors arrive on the homepage and are left to dig through the site for specific information on their own. Landing pages, on the other hand, allow visitors to arrive at your site in the exact place they want to be. It’s the best way for financial institution marketers to quickly and easily offer content that meets the specific needs of various target audiences.

    Customers want this level of personalization, and they're open to the idea of trading their information for it. In fact, more than three-quarters of consumers in one study said they would be willing to give more personal data in return for more tailored services. When customers submit their contact information through a form to download the content on your landing page, not only are they getting tailored content, but you're getting data that can fuel more personalized outreach directly to primed prospects. And that leads to higher conversion rates.

    Start creating landing pages by planning a page for each promotion in your overall marketing campaign or for each of your target audiences. Then, we recommend the following steps to drive conversion:

    1. Keep it simple and direct.

    Ultimately, the goal of a landing page for financial institutions is to learn more about prospects by gathering their information in the form field. For visitors, the clearer the path to the field, the likelier they will be to share their data. Don’t fill a page with too many images, multiple offers, and other clutter — you’ll just increase the chances of visitors bouncing off the page before taking action. Instead, stick with concise, clear messaging, easy-to-follow directives, strong calls to action, and impactful design elements.


    2. Leverage pre-built, fully customizable templates.

    Few marketing professionals have the bandwidth or experience to build a whole webpage on their own. Fortunately, software like Denim Social with landing page functionality will offer pre-built, customizable templates that allow you to start with a page already optimized for conversion.


    From there, you can easily customize the content, form fields, colors, images, and video on each page to fit your campaign goals. The key here is to keep a consistent style across pages so each one fits under your overall brand umbrella.

    3. Scale, scale, scale!

    The real beauty of using pre-built, customizable templates is the ability to design, build, and launch landing pages at scale. Denim Social’s code-free interface makes it easy for anyone to populate many templates with customized elements — no web design expertise required. Just personalize, publish, then easily iterate and adjust based on conversion data.

    In practice, this looks like building hundreds or even thousands of highly professional landing pages in just minutes. That’s a lot more opportunity for targeted messaging than one broad website homepage on its own.

    Landing pages are one of the most effective tools at your disposal to create tailored experiences, capture valuable information, and generate high-quality leads. With the right platform, any marketer can build landing pages at scale and propel more prospects toward conversion.

    The pandemic has been a catalyst for quick shifts in the financial services industry, and many of those changes have created more challenges when it comes to compliance. For one, a large portion of financial services workers have transitioned to working remotely, and this isn’t likely to change: Research from PwC shows that even after the pandemic, nearly 70 percent of financial services companies say the majority of their workforces will work from home at least once a week moving forward. For banks, accommodating this new work environment has meant updating digital tools and processes.

    Remote work tools are not the only aspect of digital transformation that banks are taking on. In fact, the virtual shift was already well underway before COVID-19 as consumers sought more digital touchpoints. The pandemic just sped up the process.

    Such fast–paced digital transformation has meant increased risk for missteps and errors that can trigger compliance concerns. As bank marketers look for more ways to make virtual connections, they should keep the following in mind when it comes to navigating increased compliance risks:

    1. Employees are both your greatest asset and your greatest risk.

    When loan officers, financial advisors, and other bank associates cannot meet with clients and prospects in person, social media can be an excellent tool for relationship-building. Employees can also significantly expand a brand’s reach on social. There are regulations to keep in mind around electronic communication, however. FINRA’s rules, for instance, prohibit misleading or promissory statements and claims as well as communication that predicts or projects performance.

    When the world went digital, banks without proper approval processes already nailed down likely felt the crunch as employees began interacting more online. When employees and marketers can’t simply stop by a compliance officer’s desk to ask about social updates or blog post ideas, adjusting approval processes is a must. Banks need an approval framework to ensure that every brand-related social media post from every employee meets brand messaging and regulatory guidelines. The right social media management tools can automate that approval process so that employees can send posts or engagements to the right person with just a click of a button.

    2. A hot mortgage market doesn’t make safety any less important.

    The mortgage market is hotter than ever before as rates reach historic lows. Loan officers are busy helping more clients secure mortgages, and the savvy ones are also using social media to get in front of prospects and capture more business. As business increases, however, so should a bank’s attention on compliance.

    Marketers can keep a close eye on electronic communication using software with keyword filtering capabilities. For example, marketers could flag the word “guarantee” so any social post with that word creates an alert, so no promissory posts go live. Automatic archiving is another excellent software capability when it comes to compliance. When each post and engagement is automatically saved and stored, it’s easy to prove compliance if auditors ever come knocking.

    3. If your marketing department’s growth is limited, optimize your processes.

    Digital transformation may be accelerating quickly in the financial services sphere, but that does not mean marketing or compliance teams are expanding alongside it. Many financial institutions currently lack the resources to expand staff as they navigate revenue-related challenges of the pandemic.

    The roles of marketers and compliance teams, however, are indeed increasing in scope and importance as banks must continue connecting virtually with consumers to guide them through new, digital ways of doing business. The good news is that banks can expand their capabilities without expanding staff or making huge capital expenditures on sophisticated digital tools. Social media is a low-cost, high-ROI option, and there are affordable social media management tools that enable marketers to keep electronic communication within regulatory bounds at scale.

    For institutions that aren’t planning to grow their budgets anytime soon, optimizing marketing and compliance processes is key to connecting digitally with customers while maintaining compliance. Tools that automatically bring red flags to marketers’ attention and make it easy for employees to post approved content will help marketers guide banks safely through this digital transformation and the next.

    RESOURCES

    VISION
    January 26, 2021

    How Loan Officers Can Use Social Media to Win Business

    As mortgage demand surges, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot with no signs of slowing down. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it’s important to note that COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be slowing down, either. Capitalizing on the opportunity of increased mortgage demand has to look a little different today than it has before: As the pandemic limits face-to-face interaction, loan officers can’t rely on traditional tactics to win business and get a leg up over the competition.

    So as the pandemic continues and as competition builds higher than ever, how can bank marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media. Social media has already become an essential part of the mortgage lending business — consumers expect technology to be part of their homebuying process — and many marketers and loan officers have recognized the value of social channels in maintaining authentic human relationships safely during COVID-19. But in a market that’s more competitive than ever before, social media strategies must be competitive as well. 

    It’s time to kick it up a notch. With the following strategies, bank marketers can help loan officers build stronger social media strategies to stand out from the crowd and win mortgage business in 2021:

    1. Activate loan officers on social media.

    Audiences pay more attention to individual people on social media than to brands. That’s why a social selling approach, in which individual associates share branded messages on their own social media profiles, can stretch the reach of brand messaging 561% further than if a brand shared the message on only the company profile.

    Marketers can help loan officers carry out their own successful social media strategies by arming them with educational content that their audiences will find useful. With the right social media management tool, marketers can store pre-approved content in a digital library, and loan officers can access it easily and frequently to share with their social media followers. What’s more, if each piece of content gets the compliance team’s sign-off before going into the library, the marketing team can rest easy knowing loan officers aren’t overstepping any regulatory red tape.

    2. Drive interest with paid social media.

    A compliant, organic social selling strategy is an important foundation — but to truly get ahead of the rest and capture more mortgage business, you’ll need to level up your social game. To target and distribute each post strategically for maximum return, fuel your social selling efforts with advertising dollars in paid social campaigns.

    For example, if a loan officer wants to reach first-time homebuyers, you can target an ad by ZIP code to land it among those who are currently in rental-heavy areas. Whatever specific audience you’re trying to reach, paid ads allow you to tailor and target each message according to key indicators that someone may be looking to refinance or buy.

    3. Use content to educate and engage.

    Whether an organic social post or a paid ad, the content your loan officers share on social media can both help spark an interest in their services and position them as the trusted expert to turn to when it’s time to buy or refinance.

    Arm your loan officers with articles, guidebooks, blog posts, and more to help educate audiences on the unique opportunities in today’s market and how they can save a lot of money. By helping followers understand what they have to gain, loan officers can set the foundation for many trusting, lasting client relationships.

    4. Drive conversions with a post-click experience.

    When loan officers share targeted, relevant content on social media, they’ll get their audience’s attention — but what happens next? Give interested prospects a clear path to further engage with your brand with landing pages.

    Build landing pages on your website to correspond with each of your social campaigns. For example, the social selling strategy to reach first-time homebuyers could lead prospects to a landing page where they can download a guidebook on securing their first mortgage. You can create a capture form that asks for their name, email, and phone number in return for the download. Then, the contact information for your hottest leads is right in your hands. With it, you can do more than engage with audiences — you can convert prospects into clients.

    Of course, all of this would be hard for any marketing team to pull off at the scale necessary to remain competitive in today’s mortgage market. The right social media management software can help you create landing pages with ease, coordinate different paid campaigns at once, ensure compliance among individual loan officers’ social posts, house educational content for loan officers to share frequently, and more. Today, when there’s both more opportunity and more competition for loan officers than perhaps ever before, investing in social media is well worth the money and effort.

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    SIMILAR POSTS:

    The insurance industry is built on relationships — so much so that, before the pandemic, 90% of sales conversations and 70% of ongoing customer conversations happened face-to-face. Things today look quite different: Only 5% of agents say they’re talking to customers in person.

    Digitizing marketing operations became a top priority for companies in the insurance industry almost overnight. Not only is the landscape in the midst of significant change for nearly every customer segment, but the use of digital channels is also accelerating due to the pandemic. Some insurance companies might even take a digital-first approach to sales as a result, with consumers choosing to seek advice from advisors through video calls or live chat.

    Insurance marketers need to move beyond traditional techniques and arm agents with the tools to effectively communicate and convert prospective customers in the digital space. How to go about doing this will depend on the company as well as its target audiences, but here are a few elements for every insurance marketer to keep in mind:

    1. Never lose the human touch.

    Trust is paramount in the insurance industry, but as more customer interactions occur online, companies will have to try harder to build and maintain it. One recent Accenture survey of insurance consumers found that only 12% said they placed a lot of trust in automated services over phone, web, or email when making a claim, and only 7% said the same about chatbots. However, nearly half said they would trust a human advisor. To avoid eroding trust with digitization efforts, you must put the human element front and center in every digital interaction.

    Social media is an excellent way to do this, but we’re not only talking about a big company brand page. To establish and maintain connections via social channels, encourage advisors to use their own professional accounts. An advisor’s professional accounts generally have 10 times the reach of company profiles, and they’re also more likely to improve customer engagement, as the interactions are coming from a human rather than from a brand.

    Customers value authentic human connections: Life insurance customers who had interaction with their insurers had Net Promoter Scores 25 points higher than customers who had no interaction at all.

    2. Reevaluate the customers’ digital journeys.

    Social media is the place for agents to start conversations and get prospects’ attention digitally, but it’s only the starting point in a larger customer journey. Audit the tools that agents are currently using, and assess how each individual channel contributes to the larger customer journey.

    If the majority of an agent’s social posts are just graphics or text, they’re not leading prospects anywhere — they’re just building social media dead ends. To lead prospects to the next step in a digital journey, build landing pages on your website that agents can link to in their social posts. When prospects follow the post to the landing page, they take a meaningful next step in the digital journey with your brand to engage and learn more.

    3. Personalize your approach.

    Personalization is the name of the game in digital marketing. The problem is, some insurers are more “cut-and-paste” with online interactions, sending out messages and promotions built for the masses.

    In the Accenture survey above, 66% of insurance consumers said they would be willing to share personal data for more personalized services to prevent injury and loss. With that in mind, it’s clear how a broad approach misses many potential prospects. Work toward personalizing the digital experience for a variety of target audiences by providing valuable content tailored to their specific needs and develop landing pages geared toward each of your audience sectors. It’s not a one-size-fits-all customer journey, so don’t treat it as such.

    Changing marketing tactics is no small undertaking. It requires time, resources, and know-how to do successfully. Social media management tools from Denim Social can help get agents active on social media at scale, put human faces behind the brand name, and build online customer journeys based on trust.

    Find out how more than 400 financial institutions across asset classes, geographies, and more used social media in 2020 to effectively support their business objectives. We’ve also outlined key trends to inform your social media future.

    In speaking with friends, co-workers and bankers, I have come across many reasons why more of us are not effectively using social media: not enough time, concerns about compliance and lack of knowledge top the list.

    In banking, we are the relationship builders, the trusted sources and the personal interaction—whether in-person or via social, video, chat or other mediums. So how do we bridge the gap between in-person and digital interactions? How do we display our personality digitally while balancing compliance concerns? How do we personalize digital outreach and engagement through curated content and social media channels in order to educate customers and engage new prospects?

    Banks’ retail customers and business clients expect personalized experiences. Using social media in a compliant way for bankers to engage with customers and differentiate themselves from the competition. According to Denim Social, ABA’s endorsed social media management platform, building a personalized and human digital experience is key, and the best place to start doing it is on social media. Informative and educational content is a fantastic entry point into a digital journey, as it starts by engaging prospects and building trust.

    People trust people, and banks that have individual employees actively using social media on behalf of the bank’s brand are seeing results. Even when sharing the same content, on average employees see a click-through rate twice as high as their company’s own social channels see, according to LinkedIn. Two-thirds of consumers surveyed by the Harris Poll say they are likely to purchase an item or service they see on their social feeds.

    Here’s a simple process to make social selling work in a bank context:

    • Marketing teams easily curate and share educational, compliant content in a pre-approved digital library.
    • Then employees access the approved content and share through their own, personal digital channels.
    • Approval workflows and compliance checks along the way ensure the posts meet both the bank’s compliance and branding requirements.

    Employee posts are a complement to, not a substitute for, paid social media, which enables marketers to create and target paid ads specific to demographics, geography and more. Imagine creating educational content for a demographic of first-time homebuyers. Your loan officer shares savings tips, homeownership information and educational content on their social channels, establishing expertise and developing relationships along the way. Paid ads ensure the right homebuyers see the content.

    According to IBM, when a lead is generated through social selling or employee advocacy, that lead is seven times more likely to close compared to other lead gen tactics. Through this digital relationship, your loan officer has engaged in social selling and is reaching new markets—all without leaving the comfort of their home, their office or (these days) their home office.

    This article was originally published by ABA Bank Marketing.

    Lisa Gold Schier is an SVP at ABA, where she leads the ABA Endorsed Solutions team and business innovation.

    The insurance sales environment has been rocked by COVID-19. What was once an industry built on face-to-face relationships is now going through rapid digital transformation. In the absence of in-person meetings, social media is the best place for agents to build trust with current and prospective clients.

    Trust is the No. 1 thing insurance companies sell, after all, and a recent Edelman report shows that consumers rank brand employees as more trustworthy than brand CEOs or spokespeople. When insurance agents get in front of customers on social media, they can sell trust more effectively than brands alone.

    And customers are looking for authentic connections: One study shows that life insurance customers who connected with their insurers gave Net Promoter Scores 25 points higher than those who did not. With face-to-face meetings off the table, social media is the primary stand-in for forging those deep, connected relationships that build trust and drive referrals.

    As more agents recognize this and flock online to bring in business and build their individual professional brands, insurance marketers are tasked with scaling oversight to ensure compliance and consistent brand messaging. Considering that marketers at large companies could be looking at social strategies of thousands of agents dispersed across markets nationwide, it’s easy to see how managing the creation and publishing of owned and paid content can be incredibly time-consuming and complex.

    Despite these challenges, insurance marketers must manage social media well. So how can marketing departments handle the influx of responsibilities? Start by understanding the most common mistakes and how to avoid them:

    1. Letting agents fly solo.

    Agents are busy, especially at a time when insurance needs are changing constantly. What’s more, many agents are likely jumping into social media as a professional tool for the first time: More than three-quarters of property-casualty agents are over age 50. They likely have less experience on social than their digital-native counterparts and require more guidance from marketing teams. It’s the marketing team’s responsibility to encourage agents to get and stay active on social media by making this task as easy as possible for them.

    The right social media management software will allow marketers to create content libraries filled with preapproved posts. Agents can simply log in, choose which preapproved post they’d like to share, and either post it right away or schedule it to be posted later. This makes it easy for agents to access and post valuable content for their readers, and marketers will know that agents’ posts aren’t risking compliance or brand reputation.

    2. Kicking it old-school.

    Posting content and managing engagement on each individual social media platform is simply not scalable for marketers or agents today. For your team to be successful on social media, you must modernize your tools. Multichannel publishing platforms can help you effectively and efficiently create, approve, and publish content — and then manage engagement for many accounts on various platforms at once. Marketers can create approval workflows, schedule out social posts, and manage comments and other engagements, all from one central location.

    What’s more, social media management software can help ease the regulatory pressure that comes along with electronic communications. In order to prove compliance in the event of an audit, you must keep record of every branded post and engagement. If you have thousands of agents using social media on behalf of the brand, however, it’s simply impossible to keep track of it all manually. It’s time to retire the binders and invest in software that can automatically log all of your posts and replies — saving you time and keeping your team audit-ready.

    3. Being intimidated by paid social advertising.

    When brands first began using social media as a marketing tool, all it took to make a post go viral was high-quality content. While great content is certainly a necessary place to start today, platforms have since updated their algorithms to make branded content less visible overall. Despite all the work that agents and marketers put into organic social media strategies, the reach could be insignificant without the help of paid advertising.

    Paid social media advertising is a low-cost, high-return investment that will ensure branded posts land with exactly the right audiences at the right time. One of our clients, a Fortune 200 insurance company, used paid social to create one campaign that delivered click-through rates 59% higher than the financial and insurance industry average for social media and mobile advertising. And the cost-per-click was 24% less than similar campaigns.

    Yes, it’s true that managing paid campaigns can be a headache for marketers, especially if they’re dealing with multiple campaigns at the brand, agency, and agent levels. But social media management software can step in to help ease the burden, and the results are worth the investment.

    It’s understandable that agents and marketers alike might feel they’ve been tossed into the deep end as insurance saw a 180-degree shift in sales strategies almost overnight. The good news, however, is that the right tools can help you get a handle on the new demands of today to build an even stronger sales strategy for tomorrow.

    As mortgage demand surges to historic highs, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it also means the environment is more competitive than ever.

    So how can marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media.

    Read this guidebook from Denim Social to learn how you can help your loan officers build strong relationships, stand out from the crowd and win more business using social media.

    You can’t just call yourself a “thought leader.” Thought leadership is earned, and you earn it by having a powerful voice in your domain. But how do you cultivate that voice? To answer that question, James Robert Lay of the Digital Growth Institute invited Doug Wilber, CEO at Denim Social, onto the latest episode to discuss how financial brands can create content worthy of the “thought leader” mantle.

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